Olive Ann Beach, co-founder of the Beech Aircraft Corporation, was born and raised on a farm south of Waverly.
After high school graduation, she attended a business college in Wichita, and began her career in the aviation industry, accepting a job with the Travel Air Manufacturing Company in Wichita. On February 24, 1930, she married the president of the company, Walter H. Beech, and together they founded Beech aircraft Corporation in 1932. Mrs. Beech operated the company following her husband’s death in 1950, and was named chairman emeritus after her retirement in 1982.
Her other honors include the following:
* Woman of the Year – 1951
* Kansas of the Year – 1958
* Nominated to the NASA Space Shuttle Study Committee – 1971